O’s Embleton says they now have competition for places ahead of Silkmen clash

George Marsh of Leyton Orient and Charlie Lakin of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Leyton Orient, Sky

George Marsh of Leyton Orient and Charlie Lakin of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Leyton Orient, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 1st February 2020 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Leyton Orient head coach Ross Embleton insists they have plenty of competition for places following the closure of the January transfer window, writes Jacob Ranson.

George Marsh of Leyton Orient and Charlie Lakin of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Leyton Orient, Sky

George Marsh of Leyton Orient and Charlie Lakin of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Leyton Orient, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 1st February 2020 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

The O's head into a busy week with back-to-back home fixtures against Macclesfield Town and Mansfield Town who both sit below them in League Two.

They welcome the Silkmen to Brisbane Road on Saturday, before also hosting the Stags on the Tuesday night.

Head coach Embleton moved to bring in the likes of goalkeeper Lawrence Vigoroux, Ouss Cisse, Kazaiah Sterling, Danny Johnson and extend the loan deal of George Marsh during the window and it has increased competition.

"It's taken us a little bit longer than we wanted it to, obviously we got Lawrence done quickly, Cisse not long after him and the same with George Marsh," Embleton said.

George Marsh of Leyton Orient and Charlie Lakin of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Leyton Orient, Sky

George Marsh of Leyton Orient and Charlie Lakin of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Leyton Orient, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 1st February 2020 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo


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"I think what we've now managed to do is create competition for places and once these boys come back we've got a packed and healthy squad.

"Cisse is in direct competition with Hector Kyprianou, Josh Wright and Craig Clay with 'Marshy' when he goes back into that position.

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"Joe Widdowson can't get back into the team because of James Brophy's performances and then the strikers have got stern competition at all times now which is what we need."

O's head into the fixtures on the back of a comfortable 3-0 win over basement-club Stevenage at the weekend and the boss feels they now have plenty to build on moving forward, including the defensive partnership of youngsters Marvin Ekpiteta and Dan Happe.

"Marvin is outstanding, he's obviously found himself. Like a lot of people he has been in and out of the team this year, but in the last few weeks he's really grabbed hold of the opportunity," said Embleton.

"I think his performances have been the same for the last three and a half games. Dan Happe alongside him as well, they've really complemented each other, their athleticism, ability to defend, they've also added aggression to their performances."

Conor Wilkinson and youngster Ruel Sotiriou are also starting to form a real partnership up front for the O's in the last few games.

"He (Wilkinson) gives us a real platform to build on, his movement is very clever, I think because of his size and athleticism he moves defenders around and it opened up opportunities for Ruel to score."

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